New Budget & New Adventures

Recently we have made the switch to a cash budget. Our reasons need not be ALL disclosed, but suffice it to say God put it on our hearts to spend way less,  to give more easily, and remove ourselves from the addicting culture of needing more.

I actually love it!

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And…. I hate it. Truly. It just depends on the day!

This obsession we have with buying constantly and excess…. It has to be a heart issue of discontent. Of greed. It’s an issue of pride.

To constantly feel like we want the new.

The next.

The “best”.

If we weren’t always comparing would we always be buying???

It feels good to be stepping back from that! Truly a relief! This is a heart condition that is encouraged by our society, and not a healthy one! Our Lord tells us to not even worry about what we will worry about tomorrow, for He can provide for His children. He reminds us many times how we should not store up our treasures on earth but in heaven, for, “Where our treasures are. There our heart will be.” I sure want my heart and my kids’ hearts and focus to be in heaven.

What’s all this earthly junk good for anyway? The only thing it accomplishes is giving me a focus OTHER than my heavenly goal!

 

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Here are a few things I’ve discovered I appreciate about this new phase:

  • I love the challenge the smaller and cash in my hands budget presents. I’m competitive, so it kind of thrills me to “win” at the end of the month…… (In a weird, possibly twisted  kind of way!)
  • I LOVE the feeling of knowing we can live in amazing conditions, still spoiled beyond our needs with less than what the TV or radio tries to sell me.
  • I love browsing the Once Upon a Child racks with my little girl and our friends. :) Coming home with an entire 3t wardrobe (spring and fall!) for the price I would pay at Old Navy or Target for a couple jeans and maybe three t-shirts.
  • I love feeling efficient in getting the most out of what I purchase. House wifely-ness in that productivity is so satisfying!
  • I love that my house can stay more orderly as I purge our closets, striving for simplicity in mine and my children’s lives.

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Who really likes saving an old blouse from pre marriage and pre baby! (There are so many reason that is not healthy! ;) )

Who needs multiples of a similar toy? (Maybe the kids think they do… But only so they can destroy the house more easily!)

Actually. That brings up another reason I love this new low spend-purge the house season!

My kids!

wpid-20140915_124223.jpgIt has shown me how unnatural it is to have needless & excessive amounts of… Really anything.

  • They want to wear the same clothes every day anyway.
  • They only like and can keep track of MAYBE one pair of shoes.
  • They want the same healthy snacks most days. Why buy so much variety? Fresh fruit and home made baked goods. That’s what they’re happiest with anyway!
  • They really only LOVE a few specific toys. They have not missed any of the items I throw away during my post bed time pick up. Hailee is always more than ready and willing to donate some toys she doesn’t play with.

If there’s one her eager little 2 year old heart struggles with getting rid of (Tonight, for example, it was a doll carrier that has lived in her closet untouched for the past 2 months.) It only requires a simple explanation on how she “never plays with it so it doesn’t make sense to keep it does it to Mom… Does she agree?” And she puckeres her lips as she thinks for a minute. Then nods her head and says “OHHHH! Yeah mama. It can go in the bye-bye bag.” Her flexibility and sweetness puts me to shame!

Where will this culture end up if we continue down this path of MORE. CONSTANTLY? It only has one way it can go at this rate! We have to start their training when they’re kids. It will only make their lives easier and better!

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I love being efficient in my kitchen.

  • Making home made tomato sauce to freeze when a friend brings bags of tomatoes. (That’s going to help with next months grocery shopping! WIN!)
  • Or when I cook a whole chicken, boiling the leftover bones for broth. (That makes the best soup!)
  • Freezing left overs before they go bad, rather than waiting for them to go bad and throwing them away. Leftovers are definitely the hero of the day!!!

I’m so eager to try the tomato sauce on my stove right now!

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Last week I posted a recipe I found for home made Rice A Roni. Talk about worth the effort! It was way better than the boxed kind and once again helped my budget stretch. You can see the recipe here! Also. I officially quit buying tortillas. At least when it’s just my family to be fed. They took about 20 minutes total and were AMAZING! Try these!

Today I spent the peace of nap time composing a list of my go to easy dinners that I nearly always have the ingredients for to help on the stressful days… When I’m usually rushing over to Papa Murphy’s and wasting my time AND money! What a loser.

(As I work my way through that list in the next few months I will be sure and blog them here because who doesn’t burn out on their easy favorites every once in a while? Well you’re more than welcome to mine… A few hints: Bacon and Cheddar Quiche with Cheesy Potatoes, Home Made Pesto Pasta, EASY Sloppy Joes, Crock pot Chalupas with fresh Tortillas, Oven Roasted Chicken and Veggies in wine sauce… Doesn’t it sound delicious?! My weeks menu was immediately made with that list!)

As far as my dislikes….

  • Seriously. Shopping is such a struggle with two littles already. I’m always sweating. And NOW I add this envelope with all this little pockets for diffeerent categories.
  • I already avoid Walmart like the plague. But NOW when I go… You shouldn’t stand in line behind me. I’m still practicing. All I know is I have to pull some cash from the back pocket for the diapers, some cash from the front for the chips, some cash from my pocket for the make up. Oi! Talk about sweating.
  • I LOVE online shopping. That’s a little hard with CASH. Its all a TRAP to get me to spend more than I should though. So it’s going to be OK. (If I WIN at the end of the month!)
  • Etc.
  • Etc..
  • Etc…

But it’s worth it. I truly think it’s the responsible Christian thing to do. (Being responsible with where your money goes… Not necessarily cash!) And I’m excited to be doing it. I have been successful all the months so far. I have to keep the momentum going, because it sure isn’t coming naturally yet. But its still challenging in an exciting way right now. Here I go!

So. I just thought I’d share at little of what’s been going on. What things I am looking forward to. And what things I have done begrudgingly! Maybe you’re as new to the game as I am. Or just looking for a refreshing thought. Or maybe you just find it entertaining to read about my naive new journey. Enjoy! I’ll probably keep posting. If I don’t, you can ask me if I gave up. That’ll light a fire under me for sure!

 

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